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2010 Forester
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621 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm a fair DIY mechanic, but when I tried to carefully remove the 4 plastic fasteners that hold down my XT's engine cover (and other things under the hood) I broke 2 of them and then found that even with the center "plunger" removed, they will not fit back into the hole from which they came.

Called the dealer who says these are $2.75 apiece (worth $.25) and they they don't stock any and he has not heard of any ever breaking. Is this guy full of it or what????

I want a better method of fastening the cover....these things are absurd.

Any better ideas out there?????

Thanks....... Bob
 

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Super Moderator
2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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35,712 Posts
Yes, replacement parts can be very spendy! I replaced the two on my '07 FSXT & so far, they've worked perfectly. Mine are removed by turning counterclockwise slightly with a philips screw driver, which causes them to popup. They can then be pulled off. The reinstallation is just a matter of pushing them back into the holes until they seat. Perhaps the ones on the '09 are different? :confused:

Bobby...
 

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2009 Forester XT Limited
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1,545 Posts
Yes, replacement parts can be very spendy! I replaced the two on my '07 FSXT & so far, they've worked perfectly. Mine are removed by turning counterclockwise slightly with a philips screw driver, which causes them to popup. They can then be pulled off. The reinstallation is just a matter of pushing them back into the holes until they seat. Perhaps the ones on the '09 are different? :confused:

Bobby...
Nope...........the same or really similar. Nice ride Bob! Looks good from what I can see. If you get the clips you may want to get several so that you have some xtra, just in-case! I was thinking of getting some myself.
 

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2010 Forester
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621 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I won't buy them. Those are C_ _P fasteners. Subaru should be ashamed to use them. Temporarily, I used 1/4" bolts and nuts on the rear spots and one plastic lic plate bold and nut on the front. I envision SS studs inserted from below so that the engine cover is an easy drop on and winding down some SS nuts. Neat, strong, servicable. My g-friend accuses me of modifing and improving everything I own. I think she has a point!!!!
 

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Fast & Dirty
2009 Forester XT 4 speed auto
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4,050 Posts
Go to an auto parts store. You can find all types of auto fasteners. This includes the ones holding down your engine plastic.

Surprised you broke 2. I have repeatedly removed mine with no issue. I use a needle nose plyers and a phillips screw driver. The pliers hold the outer portion while I turn the screw driver. Then pop. The now grasp the outer portion with my fingers and wiggle it out. If they are dirty clean them before installing.
 

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2010 Forester
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621 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Go to an auto parts store. You can find all types of auto fasteners. This includes the ones holding down your engine plastic.

Surprised you broke 2. I have repeatedly removed mine with no issue. I use a needle nose plyers and a phillips screw driver. The pliers hold the outer portion while I turn the screw driver. Then pop. The now grasp the outer portion with my fingers and wiggle it out. If they are dirty clean them before installing.
Something has changed. First, they aren't Phillips heads on this car. A flat blade screwdriver is needed. Second, they have little ramps inside them that allow the head to raise perhaps 1/32 - 1/16". Then, two of four are in a hole approx 3/4" deep, so grabbing with fingernails isn't so easy. And the spread of the bottom, even with the center section removed, is so wide that, once removed, it won't go back into any of the 4 holes. Yours is an '09 and mine is a '10........so now we know of at least one difference between the model years!!!!!!!

I am going to check out some auto parts shops for various fasteners. But the best thing would be a 1/4" carriage bolt inserted from the bottom of each hole and held in place by thin nuts or spring clips. I'll post a solution when I get one.

Bob
 

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2010 FXT 4EAT
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86 Posts
I've removed the engine cover on my 2010 about 8 times so far and haven't had an issue. i use a screwdriver to pry the central piece completely out before re-installing. This makes it easier, but not by much. In the end, with plenty of patience and the perfect alignment they'll drop right in. Getting rambunctious with parts like this will always lead to breakage.

In the end it's just engine dressing really anyways. and realistically of marginal value. I say stick it in a box in the attic, keep it clean and when it's not all dry-rotted, cracked, and faded when you sell the car it may look real nice at that point.
 

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Premium Member
2015 XC diesel CVT
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4,098 Posts
secret of working with those clips is that once you pop the centre out, DON'T try to pull the whole thing out by the centre; pulling it will expand the rivet again.

better to pop the centre, then use a nail lifter or trim tool to pull the outer bit.

And the same to re-install, push on the outer part to pop it in, then press the centre down.
 

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2010 Forester
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621 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I've removed the engine cover on my 2010 about 8 times so far and haven't had an issue. i use a screwdriver to pry the central piece completely out before re-installing. This makes it easier, but not by much. In the end, with plenty of patience and the perfect alignment they'll drop right in. Getting rambunctious with parts like this will always lead to breakage.

In the end it's just engine dressing really anyways. and realistically of marginal value. I say stick it in a box in the attic, keep it clean and when it's not all dry-rotted, cracked, and faded when you sell the car it may look real nice at that point.
It appears that the rubbery extension from the hood scoop mates with the engine cover, so it looks to me that turbo intercooler depends on the engine cover being in place.

I'm glad that some of you are more successful than me, but it really should not be necessary to practice special techniques and use special tools to pull out a little fastener. These fasteners are a poor idea and design. I've ordered a number of the spring nuts shown in the attached pic and will screw down the cover with 1/4-20 SS round head bolts. Should be nice and neat, and easily servicable.

Bob
 

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